Alain Ducasse’s Pan-fried Crusted Salmon with Black Rice

Black rice makes a bold background for this bright, shrimp-crusted salmon.
February 17, 2017


Remove the head from one of the shrimp. Split the underside. Detach from the shell and gently pull out the flesh. Cut along the middle of the back. Lift up the intestine with the tip of a knife (or a toothpick/cocktail stick) and remove. Repeat with remaining shrimp. Finely chop the shrimp flesh with a knife. Transfer to a bowl.

Cut off the lemongrass root. Cut a 10-cm – 4-inch length of the stalk into slices, reserving some for garnish. Mix with the shrimp. Grate the zest of half the lemon over the mixture. Add the almond meal. Drizzle with 1 teaspoon olive oil. Add a pinch of salt and mix well. Place fillets in a single layer on a large plate. Spread a thin layer of the crust mixture over each salmon square. Spread evenly with a knife. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. Add kosher salt, tip in the rice, and cook for 18 minutes.

Lay a sheet of parchment (baking) paper over the salmon. Place a plate upside down on top. Hold both plates and turn over. Remove the top plate. Season the fish with salt.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a skillet or frying pan. Slide the fish from the paper into the pan. Cook for 3 minutes over medium heat. Use a wide spatula (slotted turner) to turn the fish over. Cook for 1 additional minute. Lift the salmon squares out of the pan and lay on paper towels.

Squeeze half of the lemon into a bowl. Add a pinch of salt and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Drain the rice. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a skillet or frying pan. Add the rice and stir. Sauté for 2 minutes. Make a bed of rice on each of 4 serving plates. Place a salmon square on each bed of rice. Drizzle with vinaigrette. Garnish with the remaining lemongrass and serve.

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Crust and Vinaigrette
  • 6 jumbo shrimp (tiger prawns), cooked
  • 1 stalk fresh lemongrass
  • 1 organic, unwaxed lemon
  • 50 g – 1.76 ounces (1/2 cup) almond meal (ground almonds)
  • 3 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
  • Salt
Salmon and Rice
  • 4 (125-g – 4.4-ounce) squarecut salmon fillets, skinless
  • Kosher (coarse) salt
  • Salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 150 g - 5.29 oz (3/4 cup) black rice
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